Since 1919

The Prairie News

Since 1919

The Prairie News

Since 1919

The Prairie News

WT Alumni Association to Launch Student Food Drive for the Holidays

Simon Leech, center, president of St. Helen’s Outreach, and WT Alumni Association Executive Director Ronnie Hall, left, and Assistant Director Abby Waters hope that the community will help fill the shelves at The Market on Tierra Blanca during a holiday food drive.

CANYON, Texas — West Texas A&M University alumni and the community can do their part to combat food insecurity among WT students.

The WT Alumni Association’s holiday food drive will run Dec. 11 to 13, gathering nonperishable food items for The Market on Tierra Blanca, a Canyon food bank at St. Helen’s Outreach, an arm of St. Ann’s Catholic Church.

Donors can drop off their items at Buffalo Courts on the WT campus in Canyon or at Harrington Academic Hall WTAMU Amarillo Center, 720 S. Tyler St.

Purchases also may be made on Amazon and shipped to the Alumni Association. To view the wish list, visit

The donations will be shelved in a section at The Market designated for WT students. The Market officially will open Jan. 9; previously St. Ann’s worked with WT’s Catholic Student Center on a smaller food bank.

“Studies and our numerous conversations with WT leaders have indicated a need for food among university students,” said Glenn Backus, director of St. Helen’s Outreach. “Alumni can make a big difference by donating healthy, nutritious food items that meet the unique needs of college students who have limited or no access to a kitchen or appliances.”

WT alumni and other donors have proven generous in the past. More than 500 items were collected from alumni around the Canyon area and state during 2022’s inaugural effort.

“Our holiday food drive is a great opportunity for Buff alumni to help combat food insecurity among our students,” said Ronnie Hall, executive director of the WT Alumni Association. “Through their generosity, our alumni will make a huge difference in the lives of our current students, showing them that Buffs are always there for other Buffs.”

According to Feeding Texas, a recent report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture shows that nearly 1 in 6 Texas households are food insecure, and 4.6 million Texans are at risk for hunger. Additionally, 29 percent of students at four-year universities experience hunger, according to a recent #RealCollege survey.

WT’s Office for Student Affairs has dealt with hunger issues among numerous students and has begun formally tracking those numbers to get a better idea of the need and ways to combat it. Battling food insecurity also is a key mission this year of the WT Student Government Association.

WT’s values are reflective of and responsive to the people the University serves, as laid out in the long-range plan WT 125: From the Panhandle to the World.

That plan is fueled by the historic One West comprehensive fundraising campaign, which reached its initial $125 million goal 18 months after publicly launching in September 2021. The campaign’s new goal is to reach $175 million by 2025; currently, it has raised more than $150 million.

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